It’s getting more and more difficult to spot a metal building these days. What looks like brick, stucco or wood on the outside could actually be a metal building in disguise.
A great example of this visual deceptiveness is the Madison Square retail center in Norman, Oklahoma.
The original 20,000 square-foot structure was completed in 2010, with an additional 80,000 square-feet expansion nearing completion. It isn’t a warehouse or an industrial complex; it isn’t storage space or a personal garage. It’s a stunning retail space that, just before dusk, settles into the landscape with a relaxed air as if it’s been there for ages.
Tim Grissom, co-owner of Precision Builders, had a strong vision in mind for the retail space, which was made possible with Star Metal Buildings. It’s old world style meets new world technology, according to Grissom, which built the complex and is currently handling the expansion.
“We wanted an old, small-town downtown look where you have multiple façades of buildings that are done in different ways with different materials,” he says. “That makes each space unique.”
The veneer is a variation of stone, split-faced rock and brick of varying sizes.
“I don’t think there’s anything in the way of veneer that we couldn’t use if we wanted to use it,” says Grissom.
The varying appearance gives the building, as well as the tenants, the opportunity to streamline their visual persona. BA Fitness, a private personal training business, chose lighter brick and large block lettering, while Old Republic Title, a title company, opted for a more classic façade and logo.
“As soon as people started seeing that building go up, they wanted in there. Before we even finished construction the first tenant had moved in,” says Grissom. “It doesn’t look like a metal building and that allows us to tailor the exterior veneer to the client’s needs.”